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  • November 29, 2018 11:58 AM | Susan East Nelson (Administrator)

    Georgetown University Report Shows Nationwide Increase in the Number of Uninsured Children for the First Time in a Decade

    After nearly a decade of reducing the number of uninsured children, Louisiana showed little progress in expanding health coverage in past year, according to a new report released by the Georgetown University Center for Children and Families.

    The state’s rate of uninsured children was 3.1 percent in 2017, below the national average of 5 percent and 12th best among states, the analysis of U.S. Census data shows. An estimated 36,000 children 18 and younger remain uninsured, a drop of 3,000 children from the past year but not a statistically significant change.

    “We’re headed in the right direction, but we can’t afford to slow down,” said Susan Nelson, Executive Director of the Louisiana Partnership for Children and Families. “We want to make sure that all children have health coverage.”

    The report found that nationwide more than 276,000 children joined the ranks of the uninsured last year, the first significant increase in nearly a decade.

    “With an improving economy and low unemployment, the fact that our nation overall is going backwards on children’s health coverage is very troubling,” said Joan Alker, executive director of the Georgetown University research center and a research professor at the McCourt School of Public Policy. “We see these findings as a red flag and a sign that policymakers need to take action to get back on track.”

    Three quarters of the children who lost coverage live in states that have not expanded Medicaid to working families. Nine states saw statistically significant increases in the most recent data. No state, except the District of Columbia, saw significant improvement.

    The decline of coverage nationwide comes amid a period when Congress sought to repeal the Affordable Care Act (ACA) and cap federal Medicaid funding, as well as a delay in funding renewal for the Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP).

    “We know that children who have health coverage do better in school and grow up to be healthier more successful adults” said Jan Moller, Executive Director of the Louisiana Budget Project. “Covering their parents means there’s a better chance the children will have insurance, too. This is why Louisiana’s adoption of the Medicaid expansion has been so important for our state’s families.”

    Click here to see a breakdown of Louisiana's uninsured children.

  • September 17, 2018 11:12 PM | Susan East Nelson (Administrator)

    Do you know a Louisiana student in grades 7-12 who is a HERO – an exceptional young person who has excelled in academics, given significantly of themselves through public service, overcome adversity, or inspired others through their deeds and strength of character? If so, nominate that student to be recognized as a 2019 Louisiana Young Hero, by Louisiana Public Broadcasting and the Rotary Club of Baton Rouge. This year’s honorees will receive a $1,000 tuition assistance grant and other special honors.

    Nominees must be Louisiana students enrolled in an academic institution or homeschool program, who are not more than age 18. The student’s parent or guardian must give permission for the nomination, along with permission for LPB to use the his or her name and likeness on the air and web. Nominations and supporting materials are submitted by completing this form (link to application), and must be received by November 30, 2018. The winners will be notified in February of 2019. For more information contact or call 225-767-4274. 

    Now in its 24th year, the Louisiana Young Hero Awards, annually honors a select group of students in grades 7-12 who have made a positive impact on their community and extraordinary achievements in various facets of their lives. Nominate a Young Hero today!

  • July 05, 2016 12:22 PM | Anonymous

    In a single week in June, caseworkers from the Department of Children and Family Services’ Baton Rouge field office answered a dizzying array of calls.

    Two mothers were killed, leaving uncertain futures for their children. An infant accidentally forgotten in the back seat of a car died from the intense summer heat. Workers placed nine children into foster care, investigated a child trafficking case and started investigations into eight newborns exposed to illegal drugs.

    Six child protection investigators were available to check on those cases. Earlier in the year, the Baton Rouge office had even fewer caseworkers — just two or three — available to handle the incoming reports of abuse or neglect.

    Read the full article by Bryn Stole from The Advocate - click here.

  • June 16, 2016 5:23 AM | Anonymous


    June 16, 2016


    Father's Day is a time to pause and think about the many ways that dads make a difference in their children's lives.  Research shows that father's positive engagement can improve child well-being whether they live full-time with their children or not. Fatherhood is a complex and evolving concept, but there are some things we know for sure about its value for kids:

    Fathers make important contributions to their kids' development---and do so in ways that are different from mother's contributions.

    Fathers are more likely to use advanced language around young kids, which promotes vocabulary development. Fathers also tend to prioritize rough-and-tumble play, letting kids explore, and playing more than caretaking, which establish independence and positive social skills. Positive father engagement has been linked to better outcomes on measures of child well-being, such as cognitive development, educational achievement, self-esteem, and pro-social behavior.

    Fathers today are increasingly involved in their children's lives, especially compared to earlier generations.

    Fatherhood and fathering is central to many men's lives, though these experiences are increasingly diverse. Today's U.S. fathers take care of their children more than most fathers did a generation ago. Father-child interactions range from soothing infants and toddlers to participating in activities that stimulate their children's development, such as reading and telling stories and helping with homework. They also provide emotional support and guidance to their adolescents.


    Most fathers who do not live with children help provide for them financially.

    The popular notion of the "deadbeat dad" suggests that dads who do not live with their children try to avoid paying for them. However, in 2013, 74 percent of eligible mothers received either full or partial child support payments. Fathers often provide this support while navigating various obstacles, such as a lack of stable employment or housing, payments for children in multiple households, or struggles after incarceration.


    This money is a safety net for many families. Children who live with one parent are about twice as likely to live in poverty (28.8 percent) than the general population (14.5 percent). Child support payments lifted approximately one million people out of poverty in 2012. Fathers also provide other types of financial support that benefit child well-being: about half (51 percent) of noncustodial parents (the vast majority of whom are fathers) provide their children's health insurance, and 60 percent of fathers provide some type of non-cash support, such as gifts, clothes, food, medical expenses, or child care.

    Even fathers who don't live with their children can be involved parents.

    Resident fathers are more involved in their children's lives now than ever before, but when fathers don't live with their kids, their level of involvement varies greatly. This is partly because parents' co-parenting relationship---how well they work together to raise their child---often declines when they break up. Cooperation as co-parents is a strong predictor of a father's involvement---as strong as his earlier parenting behaviors. To keep nonresident fathers connected to their children, it's important to foster a cooperative co-parenting relationship with their child's other caregiver, who may limit the father's access to their joint children.

    More programs for parents have begun to recognize fathers' value.

    Although there are many community-based programs that focus on supporting moms, practitioners have realized fathers' needs and their importance. Many programs directly serve fathers themselves and incorporate lessons on parenting, co-parenting, and healthy relationships. Others help with professional skill-building and job searching, and have been shown to improve fathers' employment rates. The federal government recently funded nearly 50 organizations across the United States to provide these types of so-called Responsible Fatherhood activities, emphasizing the importance of improving and supporting fathers' relationships with their children.



    Elizabeth Karberg, Research Scientist; 

    Kimberly Turner, Research Scientist; 

    Shawn Teague, Research Analyst; 

    April Wilson, Research Scientist; and 

    Mindy Scott, Deputy Program Area Director of Reproductive Health and Family Formation

  • February 10, 2016 9:18 AM | Anonymous

    The Governor has issued a Call to Special Session for the Louisiana Legislators. The proclamation can be read here.

  • February 02, 2016 9:49 AM | Anonymous

    February is National Parent Leadership Month!  The FRIENDS Parent Advisory Council (PAC) is excited to offer you resources to recognize and celebrate the parents in your state, community and local programs!  Here are some materials and ideas that will help you reach out and thank the parents who make your CBCAP efforts so successful! Many of these materials are available in both English and Spanish. Consider using them this month and throughout the year. Resources:

    1. National Parent Leadership Month certificate:  A customizable award that you can download and fill in for the parent leaders you are recognizing
    2. A Recipe for Growth:  An example of how to nurture and develop parent leaders
    3. Tips for Practitioners:  Insights and wisdom from the PAC on what has helped them grow in their leadership role as well as suggestions of how parents and practitioners can join together to support parent leadership

    Additional resources including Public Service Announcements, media strategies and talking points are available by clicking the link to the Parents Anonymous NPLM toolkit:  FRIENDS is a service of the Children's Bureau and a member of the T/TA Network.

    Resource Files:

    NPLM Recipe for Growth

    NPLM Recipe for Growth (Spanish)

    NPLM Certificate Recognizing Parent Leadership

    NPLM Certificate Recognizing Parent Leadership (Spanish)

    NPLM Tips for Practitioners

    NPLM Tips for Practitioners (Spanish)

  • January 27, 2016 9:31 AM | Anonymous

    The Baton Rouge Advocate has an article in today’s paper about the ALICE report -

  • January 27, 2016 9:29 AM | Anonymous

    I am providing a link to access the United Way ALICE Report for Louisiana.  Please share as you see an opportunity.

    Thank you!!

    Sarah H. Berthelot  /  President and CEO

    Louisiana Association of United Ways 

    P O Box 3416, Baton Rouge, LA 70821/ p: 225-341-2928 / f: 225.341.2926

  • December 10, 2015 8:31 PM | Anonymous

    FRIENDS National Center is pleased to announce the release of a joint brief, Selecting a Family Support and Strengthening Program Assessment Tool: An Overview for Program Leaders and Funders.  This brief was produced in collaboration with the FRIENDS National Center, The Center for the Study of Social Policy and The National Network of Family Support and Strengthening Networks.  The intent is to inform the work of various community-based programs in selecting an appropriate program assessment tool.  The brief provides an overview of the tools available from each organization and provides insight into various areas such as:

    1)Tool cost

    2)Training available

    3)Time to complete the tool

    4)Technical Assistance available

    5)Data tracking support

    6)Contact information for the tool developers

    In addition to the information provided in the brief, The FRIENDS web site also provides additional, in-depth supporting materials at   Those materials include fact sheets on each tool, a matrix on understanding the approach of each tool, an overview of Why Program Assessment Matters to both community programs and funders as well as scenarios that help organizations make decisions about the best tool for them. 

  • November 16, 2015 10:06 AM | Anonymous
    Introducing a Compendium of Evidenced-Based Parenting Interventions

    Please join ACF for a webinar Introducing a Compendium of Evidenced-Based Parenting Interventions on December 8rd at 3:00 pm EST. .

    Strong parent-child relationships set the stage for children’s success in school and in life. Discover ways to partner with families to strengthen these relationships with the help of this compilation of evidenced-based parenting interventions for children ages birth to 5. Research has shown that the parenting interventions in this guide support children’s learning and development.

    Who Should Watch, Listen, and Participate?

    • ·        Parents and other stakeholders interested in supporting the well-being of young children and their families
    • ·        State Child Care administrators, school principals, educators and school and community leaders
    • ·         Head Start and Child care directors and staff


    Linda Smith, Deputy Assistant Secretary for Early Childhood Education, HHS

    Joshua Sparrow, MD, Director, Brazelton Touchpoints Center

    Catherine Ayoub, RN, EdD, Director, Research and Evaluation, Brazleton Touchpoints Center

    Register here:

    Learn more about this:

    Introducing a Compendium of Evidenced-Based Parenting Interventions by Shantel E. Meek, Ph.D., Senior Policy Advisor, Early Childhood Development

    See new resources that can inform early childhood programs, networks, and States in their work to partner with and support families with young children using evidence-informed approaches.

    ·        Compendium of Parenting Interventions  

    ·        Intervention Implementation Guide

    ·        Tracking Progress in Early Care and Education: Program, Staff, and Family Measurement Tools

    Sign up to receive the Early Childhood Development Newsletter

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